Electronic-symphonic poem "Jonathan Seagull" inspired by Richard Bach.
Recorded live at Moscow Composers Centre, February 4, 2005.
Performed by Russian Philharmonia Symphony Orchestra
Soloist on termenvox - Olesya Rostovskaya
Conducted by Sergey Kondrashev
What is the motivation of composer writing music? People asked: "Inna, when you were composing "Seagull", what was it – your impressions after reading the book or simply emotions, moods?"
My answer is probably not a surprise for many people – I was driven by the search of the inner harmony. It was an attempt to put together everything inside me, to feel the wholeness of the world – myself, other people, nature.
There is a cabbalistic legend of Adam Kadmon. It's a primal man, divine, absolute, ideal, harmonious. When this world was created, Adam exploded in myriad pieces, and this fragments were blown apart across the whole universe. And then people started to collect this fragments of his body, his energy. And they're doing it from then onwards, and that's the purpose of theirs life. Every man has this divine piece inside, and at the same time Adam Kadmon lives in everyone at once. For me, writing the music is the way to collect separated elements of the universe in the whole thing, in the center, inside myself.
Speaking about the plot of my symphonic poem "Jonathan Seagull", inspired by Richard Bach – his book is partially dedicated to the same theme, and his dramaturgy appears to be quite handy for writing the music. So it was easier to create a large-scale piece. And I think, it's easier to perceive the music too, especially for non-academic listeners. Of course, if I would entitle the piece simply "Symphony №1", nothing would really change. But I think that "programmed" title is more intriguing. And it's easier to remember such composition.
Basically, writing programme music is harder. If you have no given story, you can compose whatever you like. But with a fixed, exact image, you have to match it, to express it precisely. I had a lot of sketches, variations of the same themes for this poem. Sometimes I was deleting the whole fragments from my computer, already orchestrated, with successful passages. But for me they were only drafts, not yet the real images, fitting in the whole story and form.
For instance, the theme of a "crowd" (woodwinds glissando) was too beautiful, not dullish, and the flight passages for strings were too melodic at first, but less active. So I was trying more and more, until I got exactly what is necessary for the image. Not for the story itself, but for my rendition of this story. My rendition of Seagull. I really lived through every note of it. This music was directly influencing my life. When I were writing the fragment of "expulsion" (quite aggressive and dissonant), some bad things started to happen. I was even sick, so I really feel everything you can hear in the electronic part of the poem after tomtom. It all happens to me. I am the Seagull. Actually, it was a biggest compliment for me to hear people in the audience saying "I am the Seagull". If everybody feel it in the music, and run through it with me – my goal is reached. And music is now living it's own life, totally independent.